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Stuff I was wrong about - And Trail Runners

zrexer

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
2014, 15,16 & 19 Camino Frances
2017 Camino Portuguese
2018 Camino Primitivo
If I decide to walk the Portuguese next year I am thinking of shoes with lots of padding instead of my usual sandals - because of all the stone sets and cobbles. I have a very wide forefoot but New Balance don't work for me. I'd be trying the Hoka One One Bondi 5. Mainly for the cushioning.
Yeah, I can attest to the challenges of cobblestones and granite setts on the Portuguese Camino. When you look at guide books for the Portuguese Camino, the immediate reaction is that it will be easy because of the number of days without significant elevation change...Wrong! The cobblestones (hobblestones) and granite setts more than make up for it.
It was a welcome relief some days just to walk on asphalt or concrete surfaces just to have a break the cobblestones and granite setts!5238452386
 

MicheleK

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Planning first one, Camino Frances, in September 2018.
Hello @Moorwalker it took me forever to find a light trail shoe that worked for me. I settled on the HOKA ONE ONE Bondi 5. They have a wide base, lots of support and cushioning. I LOVED THEM!!!!! I walked the Camino Frances from SJPP and never had a blister or sore feet. Hope you find shoes that work for you.
 

davebugg

"When I Have Your Wounded" - Dustoff Motto
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances...
Sept. 2017: SJPdP to Burgos
Sept./Oct. 2018: SJPdP to Santiago de Compostela
I get despondent when I read shoe recommendations because I have small feet. I am therefore relegated to the so-called women's fit shoes which are invariably far narrower than the men's and which usually have narrow heels that cause blisters and trigger achilles problems. I thought I'd solved my problem with Inov8 Roclites, but this spring they have changed the design and now cut on a much narrower last that I can't even get my feet into let alone walk in.

So, does anyone know of a light trail shoe that is very wide, and comes in size 38 European size? My old Inov8's are almost falling to pieces now.
If you could tell us where you live, that would help to inform us of what is available to consider. :)
 

Lindy Lou

Member
Camino(s) past & future
September 2018 Portuguese, VDLP September 2019
ALTRA LONE PEAK are very wide. I’m onto my second pair. TOPO have a wider toe box as well.
 

Delphinoula

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino PdC 2018 Finisterre Muxía 2018
C Franconia 2019
Camino desde Algeciras Sevillia (2019)
Well I am not a runner or mointaineer , but I found out that it really depends where you walk, while most of the wilder paths I was ok with my Columbia boots. I know but did not have the funds. Over a time I felt every stone. So I found in a second hand shop a new pair of Asolos. What a difference. Heavier but so much better. Then I picked up a pair of funky looking trainers for five dollars . Brand new. I thought for the evening to switch shoes. They were the hoka one one. I was glueless. I walked in them whenever it stopped raining and I had tar roads . A true feet saver.
 

davebugg

"When I Have Your Wounded" - Dustoff Motto
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances...
Sept. 2017: SJPdP to Burgos
Sept./Oct. 2018: SJPdP to Santiago de Compostela
Hello @Moorwalker it took me forever to find a light trail shoe that worked for me. I settled on the HOKA ONE ONE Bondi 5. They have a wide base, lots of support and cushioning. I LOVED THEM!!!!! I walked the Camino Frances from SJPP and never had a blister or sore feet. Hope you find shoes that work for you.
I am going to do a bit of a hijack of your post :)

The Hokka One One Bondi 5 was replaced last year by the Bondi 6. Having used both, I find the improvements to the 6, while minor, make the Bondi an even better shoe.

I also want to make a minor point of distinction in order to help clarify the Bondi's function. Now, I use the Bondi as the shoe I wear backpacking and also on Camino, so I am not at all trying to discourage its use for such activities by sorting thru definitions.

The Bondi series are designed primarily as running shoes rather than as a trail runner or a trail shoe. The distinction defines both the feature set, build, and construction of the footwear. The Bondi does not incorporate those things that are particular to a trail runner or trail shoe.

1. Running shoes are designed for runners whose primary paths are largely hard packed or paved. They generally incorporate a bit more and firmer cushioning, and the outersole is usually not specifically designed with an aggressive tread. The uppers are constructed from lighter duty materials, and the overall design is to achieve as much lightness to the weight of the shoes as possible.

2. Trail runners / trail running shoes are designed to provide more protection for a runners' feet. It does this most frequently with the addition of a 'rock plate' which is usually embedded between the outersole and the midsole. This is needed because unlike road running, trail running involves, well, running on trails with its associated pokey stuff like rocks, roots, debris, etc. Another major distinction is a beefier structure to help with stability and motion control under rugged conditions. The third major characteristic is that they are equipped with much more aggressive tread patterns so that they can grip the trail and reduce the risk of slipping.

3. Hiking shoes. These are designed around the basic model for hiking boots. The materials are usually much 'beefier' and less flexible to the foot. This means that of the three types of shoes, they are much heavier and benefit from a prolonged break-in period. The outersoles a usually much thicker than the other two shoes types. While the structure of the shoe is stiffer, it doesn't add better stability or motion control.

Running shoes and trail runners require virtually no break in. How they feel out of the box will not substantially change with use. Wearing them will develop a 'memory' for the foot as it sits on the insole, and some minor changes to the upper on the outside of the feet may occur. Because they are lighter than hiking shoes, there is less energy use and fatigue potential to the walker.

Unlike stiffer and less flexible material like thick fabrics and leather, these shoes it will not become substantially 'molded' in the manner that one associates with traditional hiking boots. Hiking shoes, however, MAY benefit from a 'break-in', but in a far shorter period of time than traditional hiking boots.

Because the fit of the running shoe and trail runner is not subject to break in, it is important that they feel and fit well when purchasing them; they will not get 'better' with more wear. What many folks associate as a runner or trail runner 'breaking in' is actually the wearing out of the materials as they fatigue.

As I wrote above, I use my Bondi's as a trail runner even though they are a road running shoe. They do not have a rock plate, but they don't need one; the plush cushioning isolates the trail debris from the sole of the foot.

The tread is not the aggressive, deep-lugged outersole. But what I have found is that they are 'grippy' enough to provide excellent off-road traction. Part of that is how Hokka incorporates a type of micro-siping in the tread. . . . miniature, thin slits. These slits actually open a bit with each step on the ground which, in effect, creates hundreds of micro-edges that are biting into the trail surface.

I was exceedingly skeptical of the Bondi's ability to be a trail shoe, but after a lot of testing they are now my favorites. My own subjective assessment of foot aches and fatigue after 20+ miles of walking or hiking is that the cushioning markedly reduces how uncomfortable my feet feel.

That I find the Bondi a great trail shoe does NOT mean that anyone else will. I suggest it as one of several shoes to consider, but what I like is not a universal given for others.
 

MicheleK

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Planning first one, Camino Frances, in September 2018.
Hello @davebugg it was due to your kind suggestions early last summer that I tried the HOKKA'S. I was so grateful to you all the way to Santiago:). They sure worked for me.
 

Iriebabel

Iriebabel & the cyborg turtle
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances April (2018)
Camino Del Norte end of March 2019
I am going to do a bit of a hijack of your post :)

The Hokka One One Bondi 5 was replaced last year by the Bondi 6. Having used both, I find the improvements to the 6, while minor, make the Bondi an even better shoe.

I also want to make a minor point of distinction in order to help clarify the Bondi's function. Now, I use the Bondi as the shoe I wear backpacking and also on Camino, so I am not at all trying to discourage its use for such activities by sorting thru definitions.

The Bondi series are designed primarily as running shoes rather than as a trail runner or a trail shoe. The distinction defines both the feature set, build, and construction of the footwear. The Bondi does not incorporate those things that are particular to a trail runner or trail shoe.

1. Running shoes are designed for runners whose primary paths are largely hard packed or paved. They generally incorporate a bit more and firmer cushioning, and the outersole is usually not specifically designed with an aggressive tread. The uppers are constructed from lighter duty materials, and the overall design is to achieve as much lightness to the weight of the shoes as possible.

2. Trail runners / trail running shoes are designed to provide more protection for a runners' feet. It does this most frequently with the addition of a 'rock plate' which is usually embedded between the outersole and the midsole. This is needed because unlike road running, trail running involves, well, running on trails with its associated pokey stuff like rocks, roots, debris, etc. Another major distinction is a beefier structure to help with stability and motion control under rugged conditions. The third major characteristic is that they are equipped with much more aggressive tread patterns so that they can grip the trail and reduce the risk of slipping.

3. Hiking shoes. These are designed around the basic model for hiking boots. The materials are usually much 'beefier' and less flexible to the foot. This means that of the three types of shoes, they are much heavier and benefit from a prolonged break-in period. The outersoles a usually much thicker than the other two shoes types. While the structure of the shoe is stiffer, it doesn't add better stability or motion control.

Running shoes and trail runners require virtually no break in. How they feel out of the box will not substantially change with use. Wearing them will develop a 'memory' for the foot as it sits on the insole, and some minor changes to the upper on the outside of the feet may occur. Because they are lighter than hiking shoes, there is less energy use and fatigue potential to the walker.

Unlike stiffer and less flexible material like thick fabrics and leather, these shoes it will not become substantially 'molded' in the manner that one associates with traditional hiking boots. Hiking shoes, however, MAY benefit from a 'break-in', but in a far shorter period of time than traditional hiking boots.

Because the fit of the running shoe and trail runner is not subject to break in, it is important that they feel and fit well when purchasing them; they will not get 'better' with more wear. What many folks associate as a runner or trail runner 'breaking in' is actually the wearing out of the materials as they fatigue.

As I wrote above, I use my Bondi's as a trail runner even though they are a road running shoe. They do not have a rock plate, but they don't need one; the plush cushioning isolates the trail debris from the sole of the foot.

The tread is not the aggressive, deep-lugged outersole. But what I have found is that they are 'grippy' enough to provide excellent off-road traction. Part of that is how Hokka incorporates a type of micro-siping in the tread. . . . miniature, thin slits. These slits actually open a bit with each step on the ground which, in effect, creates hundreds of micro-edges that are biting into the trail surface.

I was exceedingly skeptical of the Bondi's ability to be a trail shoe, but after a lot of testing they are now my favorites. My own subjective assessment of foot aches and fatigue after 20+ miles of walking or hiking is that the cushioning markedly reduces how uncomfortable my feet feel.

That I find the Bondi a great trail shoe does NOT mean that anyone else will. I suggest it as one of several shoes to consider, but what I like is not a universal given for others.
Hi Dave, great assessment as always. After one day I’m loving my Hoka Tor Hi WP although a part of me will always be loyal to ly Lowa Aeox gortex trail runner mid. I will let you know how the Hoka Tor fair on the camino. After wearing them most of today and in Physio they feel great even with the heel spur. I was able to walk without the crutches as soon as I put them on and without pain. According to the Hoka website there is no wear in period and they are true to size. I wear a 7.5 and I bought a 7.5. Plenty of room in the toe box and even with the insoles I have plenty of room. My feet did not feel cramped. They are higher than usual above the ankle but I always go with the higher shoe, usually mid height, due to my need for ankle stability but so far on my initial assessment these shoes feel really stable on my feet. They go great with my superfeet orange insoles.
 

davebugg

"When I Have Your Wounded" - Dustoff Motto
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances...
Sept. 2017: SJPdP to Burgos
Sept./Oct. 2018: SJPdP to Santiago de Compostela
Hi Dave, great assessment as always. After one day I’m loving my Hoka Tor Hi WP although a part of me will always be loyal to ly Lowa Aeox gortex trail runner mid. I will let you know how the Hoka Tor fair on the camino. After wearing them most of today and in Physio they feel great even with the heel spur. I was able to walk without the crutches as soon as I put them on and without pain. According to the Hoka website there is no wear in period and they are true to size. I wear a 7.5 and I bought a 7.5. Plenty of room in the toe box and even with the insoles I have plenty of room. My feet did not feel cramped. They are higher than usual above the ankle but I always go with the higher shoe, usually mid height, due to my need for ankle stability but so far on my initial assessment these shoes feel really stable on my feet. They go great with my superfeet orange insoles.
That sounds wonderful and very hopeful. :)

The Tor is very near to the Bondi in terms of the level of cushioning; both are labeled as 'plush'. The Bondi is slightly more cushioney, but I don't think it would make much difference for you.

Keep check on your Achilles tendon as you are wearing them. Because they are higher than your Lowa's, there will be different pressures that this shoe will place against the tendon. I am NOT saying there will be a problem, but be aware of the possibility. If there is any tenderness, crepitance (it feels crackly, squeeky, or a rubbing sensation when you lightly manipulate the skin above the tendon), persistent redness, or swelling, stop wearing the shoe immediately.

This does not mean you can't wear the boots if tendonitis develops. There are strategies which can be implemented to make them wearable and prevent the tendinitis.

My hope is that this footwear will keep things moving in the right direction for you 👍
 

Iriebabel

Iriebabel & the cyborg turtle
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances April (2018)
Camino Del Norte end of March 2019
That sounds wonderful and very hopeful. :)

The Tor is very near to the Bondi in terms of the level of cushioning; both are labeled as 'plush'. The Bondi is slightly more cushioney, but I don't think it would make much difference for you.

Keep check on your Achilles tendon as you are wearing them. Because they are higher than your Lowa's, there will be different pressures that this shoe will place against the tendon. I am NOT saying there will be a problem, but be aware of the possibility. If there is any tenderness, crepitance (it feels crackly, squeeky, or a rubbing sensation when you lightly manipulate the skin above the tendon), persistent redness, or swelling, stop wearing the shoe immediately.

This does not mean you can't wear the boots if tendonitis develops. There are strategies which can be implemented to make them wearable and prevent the tendinitis.

My hope is that this footwear will keep things moving in the right direction for you 👍
Thank you as always. I will definately keep an eye on it. 👍🏼
 

Lindy Lou

Member
Camino(s) past & future
September 2018 Portuguese, VDLP September 2019
I am going to do a bit of a hijack of your post :)

The Hokka One One Bondi 5 was replaced last year by the Bondi 6. Having used both, I find the improvements to the 6, while minor, make the Bondi an even better shoe.

I also want to make a minor point of distinction in order to help clarify the Bondi's function. Now, I use the Bondi as the shoe I wear backpacking and also on Camino, so I am not at all trying to discourage its use for such activities by sorting thru definitions.

The Bondi series are designed primarily as running shoes rather than as a trail runner or a trail shoe. The distinction defines both the feature set, build, and construction of the footwear. The Bondi does not incorporate those things that are particular to a trail runner or trail shoe.

1. Running shoes are designed for runners whose primary paths are largely hard packed or paved. They generally incorporate a bit more and firmer cushioning, and the outersole is usually not specifically designed with an aggressive tread. The uppers are constructed from lighter duty materials, and the overall design is to achieve as much lightness to the weight of the shoes as possible.

2. Trail runners / trail running shoes are designed to provide more protection for a runners' feet. It does this most frequently with the addition of a 'rock plate' which is usually embedded between the outersole and the midsole. This is needed because unlike road running, trail running involves, well, running on trails with its associated pokey stuff like rocks, roots, debris, etc. Another major distinction is a beefier structure to help with stability and motion control under rugged conditions. The third major characteristic is that they are equipped with much more aggressive tread patterns so that they can grip the trail and reduce the risk of slipping.

3. Hiking shoes. These are designed around the basic model for hiking boots. The materials are usually much 'beefier' and less flexible to the foot. This means that of the three types of shoes, they are much heavier and benefit from a prolonged break-in period. The outersoles a usually much thicker than the other two shoes types. While the structure of the shoe is stiffer, it doesn't add better stability or motion control.

Running shoes and trail runners require virtually no break in. How they feel out of the box will not substantially change with use. Wearing them will develop a 'memory' for the foot as it sits on the insole, and some minor changes to the upper on the outside of the feet may occur. Because they are lighter than hiking shoes, there is less energy use and fatigue potential to the walker.

Unlike stiffer and less flexible material like thick fabrics and leather, these shoes it will not become substantially 'molded' in the manner that one associates with traditional hiking boots. Hiking shoes, however, MAY benefit from a 'break-in', but in a far shorter period of time than traditional hiking boots.

Because the fit of the running shoe and trail runner is not subject to break in, it is important that they feel and fit well when purchasing them; they will not get 'better' with more wear. What many folks associate as a runner or trail runner 'breaking in' is actually the wearing out of the materials as they fatigue.

As I wrote above, I use my Bondi's as a trail runner even though they are a road running shoe. They do not have a rock plate, but they don't need one; the plush cushioning isolates the trail debris from the sole of the foot.

The tread is not the aggressive, deep-lugged outersole. But what I have found is that they are 'grippy' enough to provide excellent off-road traction. Part of that is how Hokka incorporates a type of micro-siping in the tread. . . . miniature, thin slits. These slits actually open a bit with each step on the ground which, in effect, creates hundreds of micro-edges that are biting into the trail surface.

I was exceedingly skeptical of the Bondi's ability to be a trail shoe, but after a lot of testing they are now my favorites. My own subjective assessment of foot aches and fatigue after 20+ miles of walking or hiking is that the cushioning markedly reduces how uncomfortable my feet feel.

That I find the Bondi a great trail shoe does NOT mean that anyone else will. I suggest it as one of several shoes to consider, but what I like is not a universal given for others.
Welcome back Dave :)
 

Moorwalker

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
none yet
Hello @Moorwalker it took me forever to find a light trail shoe that worked for me. I settled on the HOKA ONE ONE Bondi 5. They have a wide base, lots of support and cushioning. I LOVED THEM!!!!! I walked the Camino Frances from SJPP and never had a blister or sore feet. Hope you find shoes that work for you.
Those look promising, and there is a running shop not too far away which stocks them. I'll go try them on. Thanks.
 

davebugg

"When I Have Your Wounded" - Dustoff Motto
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances...
Sept. 2017: SJPdP to Burgos
Sept./Oct. 2018: SJPdP to Santiago de Compostela
Those look promising, and there is a running shop not too far away which stocks them. I'll go try them on. Thanks.
The Bondi is now v6, but it is slightly improved over the Bondi v5.

As you go looking for shoe, here are some tips which I have posted before that may help you.

The most important theme for achieving a proper fit is: You do not choose a shoe based on measurements, you buy a shoe based on its Fit N Feel regardless of instrument measurements.
  1. When you go to the store, do so toward the end of the day.... you will have been up on your feet, so that will help with getting the correct fit. Additionally, you will need to wear the same backpack with the same gear you will be carrying... you want this additional weight on you as this will put the same downward pressure on the foot that you will be having while on Camino.
  2. Wear the exact same sock(s) you will be wearing while you are walking on the Camino. And if you have a special insole or orthotic, bring it with you.
  3. At the store, the measuring that will be done on your feet is only to get you in the ballpark for the correct shoe size.
  4. Start by standing up; never measure while sitting. You want the full weight of your body, with the pack on, to put the same pressure on your feet to spread them out as will happen while walking. That alone will increase the volume and size of your feet.
  5. Make sure those 'Camino' socks are on your feet; if you wear socks with liners while walking, do the same thing at the store.
  6. While standing, have someone near to you that you can use to steady yourself. With the measuring device on the ground, step onto the instrument and center all of your weight onto the foot being measured. Do the same for the other foot.
  7. Start with that size, but be aware that both the width and the length need to feel like there is adequate room for your feet. Ideally, like Goldilocks, everything will be just right. But, don't count on it. Be picky.
  8. If you have special insoles or orthotics, put them into any shoe you try on as they will take up space inside the shoe.
  9. When you find what you think will fit you well, you will need to see if your toes have enough clearance. Toes should not be able to be forced to the front of the shoe and touch the shoe. Not even a little. If they do, long walking and downhill grades on the trail or path or road will traumatize the bed of the nail, and that is when toenails can blacken and fall off.
  10. With your shoes tied securely, but not too tight, walk around the store with your pack on. Go up stairs and down stairs, scuff the shoes to the floor so that your feet are forced to do any movement they will do and see if your toes so much as butterfly kiss the front of the shoe. Kick the front of the shoe into a post or stair or wall or someone's shin.... does that make any of your toes touch the front of the shoe? That goes for all the little piggies.
  11. Next, pay attention to the width of the shoe. It shouldn't feel snug on the sides and there should be no rubbing or pressure points at all. They will not go away with "break in". They will create soreness, pain, and blistering. Even if it seems to be tolerable, it is like water torture; as your feet are continually exposed to those pressure points your feet will break down against them bit by bit, and bruising, blisters, and soreness will follow.
  12. You may need to go up a size to a size and a half in length, and go with a wider width to avoid those things I mentioned above. The notion that one avoids blisters by wearing snug footwear has been shown to do just the opposite.
 

Jeff Crawley

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Contemplating yet another "final" Camino
but 2019?
Yeah, I can attest to the challenges of cobblestones and granite setts on the Portuguese Camino. When you look at guide books for the Portuguese Camino, the immediate reaction is that it will be easy because of the number of days without significant elevation change...Wrong! The cobblestones (hobblestones) and granite setts more than make up for it.
It was a welcome relief some days just to walk on asphalt or concrete surfaces just to have a break the cobblestones and granite setts!View attachment 52384View attachment 52386
At last - somebody who knows the difference!
 

davebugg

"When I Have Your Wounded" - Dustoff Motto
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances...
Sept. 2017: SJPdP to Burgos
Sept./Oct. 2018: SJPdP to Santiago de Compostela
Sorry, I'm an idiot :) I'm in England.
:) Hey, no problem. At first glance, I was concerned that you thought you were an idiot because of where you lived :) :p. I've known too many British to know THAT wasn't the right interpretation.

Although, in a recent consulting job with your Public Health England (PHE) I had a few doubts :)
 
Camino(s) past & future
CF April 2016 April - Jun
Del Norte, Finesterre 2018 May - Jun
Thankyou for your thorough assessment of the Bondi 6!!! I was looking for this thread after having asked a question on the forum so this is just what I was looking for. It is amazing to have your excellent input again and I do hope you are keeping well.

After walking the CF in 2016 and having extremely painful feet the entire walk, followed by the del Norte in 2018 with an excruciatingly painful left foot (which actually stopped me walking the final 27km to Muxia - I just COULD NOT do it after 900+km), I have found the Bondi 6!!

I could write a long screed about my foot/treatment and bore you to distraction, but in a nutshell, I can walk again with specially made orthotics (hard ones) and with the cushioning of the Bondi sole it feels like walking on air!! They allow me to walk to get fit after months of lessened inactivity. 5km straight yesterday....up and down trail paths, what an achievement!!! Could have done more....but baby steps and work up.

Last year I walked in Salomon X Ultra gortex low cut shoes which were very comfortable but with my left foot pronation, the heel pain started early and so it goes on! Recently I bought new ankle Salomon boots (will need walking in of course) and have had soft cushioning insoles made which I think are going to work well after the Bondi 6 have done their job.

It will then be a matter of comparison between what suits my feet best for a long walk as the plan is to do the via Francigena next year, hopefully the full one or maybe only half to be on the safe side! I'm also trialling my Ahnu low cut waterproof shoes with the prescribed soft insole, so I'm going to be quite busy.

I've missed doing the de la Plata this year - my partner is walking it now and thoroughly enjoying it.

Cheers and good health...
 

JillGat

la tierra encantada
Camino(s) past & future
C. Frances
SJPP - Finisterre - Muxia, May 2016
C. Frances, Sept 2017
Via de La Plata (spring, 2019)
I am going to do a bit of a hijack of your post :)

The Hokka One One Bondi 5 was replaced last year by the Bondi 6. Having used both, I find the improvements to the 6, while minor, make the Bondi an even better shoe.

I also want to make a minor point of distinction in order to help clarify the Bondi's function. Now, I use the Bondi as the shoe I wear backpacking and also on Camino, so I am not at all trying to discourage its use for such activities by sorting thru definitions.

The Bondi series are designed primarily as running shoes rather than as a trail runner or a trail shoe. The distinction defines both the feature set, build, and construction of the footwear. The Bondi does not incorporate those things that are particular to a trail runner or trail shoe.

1. Running shoes are designed for runners whose primary paths are largely hard packed or paved. They generally incorporate a bit more and firmer cushioning, and the outersole is usually not specifically designed with an aggressive tread. The uppers are constructed from lighter duty materials, and the overall design is to achieve as much lightness to the weight of the shoes as possible.

2. Trail runners / trail running shoes are designed to provide more protection for a runners' feet. It does this most frequently with the addition of a 'rock plate' which is usually embedded between the outersole and the midsole. This is needed because unlike road running, trail running involves, well, running on trails with its associated pokey stuff like rocks, roots, debris, etc. Another major distinction is a beefier structure to help with stability and motion control under rugged conditions. The third major characteristic is that they are equipped with much more aggressive tread patterns so that they can grip the trail and reduce the risk of slipping.

3. Hiking shoes. These are designed around the basic model for hiking boots. The materials are usually much 'beefier' and less flexible to the foot. This means that of the three types of shoes, they are much heavier and benefit from a prolonged break-in period. The outersoles a usually much thicker than the other two shoes types. While the structure of the shoe is stiffer, it doesn't add better stability or motion control.

Running shoes and trail runners require virtually no break in. How they feel out of the box will not substantially change with use. Wearing them will develop a 'memory' for the foot as it sits on the insole, and some minor changes to the upper on the outside of the feet may occur. Because they are lighter than hiking shoes, there is less energy use and fatigue potential to the walker.

Unlike stiffer and less flexible material like thick fabrics and leather, these shoes it will not become substantially 'molded' in the manner that one associates with traditional hiking boots. Hiking shoes, however, MAY benefit from a 'break-in', but in a far shorter period of time than traditional hiking boots.

Because the fit of the running shoe and trail runner is not subject to break in, it is important that they feel and fit well when purchasing them; they will not get 'better' with more wear. What many folks associate as a runner or trail runner 'breaking in' is actually the wearing out of the materials as they fatigue.

As I wrote above, I use my Bondi's as a trail runner even though they are a road running shoe. They do not have a rock plate, but they don't need one; the plush cushioning isolates the trail debris from the sole of the foot.

The tread is not the aggressive, deep-lugged outersole. But what I have found is that they are 'grippy' enough to provide excellent off-road traction. Part of that is how Hokka incorporates a type of micro-siping in the tread. . . . miniature, thin slits. These slits actually open a bit with each step on the ground which, in effect, creates hundreds of micro-edges that are biting into the trail surface.

I was exceedingly skeptical of the Bondi's ability to be a trail shoe, but after a lot of testing they are now my favorites. My own subjective assessment of foot aches and fatigue after 20+ miles of walking or hiking is that the cushioning markedly reduces how uncomfortable my feet feel.

That I find the Bondi a great trail shoe does NOT mean that anyone else will. I suggest it as one of several shoes to consider, but what I like is not a universal given for others.
I walked the Frances twice in mostly Chaco sandals, alternating with Altra Lone Peak because I have WIDE forefeet. Now, planning to walk the Portugues with all those cobblestones and pavement, I'm thinking I need to find something with more cushioning than the Altra. The Hoka Bondi sounds good, and it comes in wide, but I hope it's wide enough! Even most men's size wide shoes aren't wide enough for my duck feet.
 

davebugg

"When I Have Your Wounded" - Dustoff Motto
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances...
Sept. 2017: SJPdP to Burgos
Sept./Oct. 2018: SJPdP to Santiago de Compostela
I walked the Frances twice in mostly Chaco sandals, alternating with Altra Lone Peak because I have WIDE forefeet. Now, planning to walk the Portugues with all those cobblestones and pavement, I'm thinking I need to find something with more cushioning than the Altra. The Hoka Bondi sounds good, and it comes in wide, but I hope it's wide enough! Even most men's size wide shoes aren't wide enough for my duck feet.
I don't know if it will help, but my feet are wider than the wide EE widths and the Bondi still works pretty well for me. From what I remember, they were wider than the Altras, which impinged just a hair bit on the width of my feet at the metatarsal area.
 

JillGat

la tierra encantada
Camino(s) past & future
C. Frances
SJPP - Finisterre - Muxia, May 2016
C. Frances, Sept 2017
Via de La Plata (spring, 2019)
My widest point is the metatarsal area, partly due to bunions.
 

peregrina2000

Moderator
Staff member
So, am i understanding right that the Hoka Ones are wider in the metatarsal area (and toe box, I assume) and more cushioned than the Lone Peaks? I walked many long days last year in the Lone Peaks and my feet were never achy. I thought it had amazing cushioning, so if you tell me the Hoka Ones are better, I will give them a try.
 

JillGat

la tierra encantada
Camino(s) past & future
C. Frances
SJPP - Finisterre - Muxia, May 2016
C. Frances, Sept 2017
Via de La Plata (spring, 2019)
So, am i understanding right that the Hoke One’s are wider in the metatarsal area (and toe box, I assume) and more cushioned than the Lone Peaks?
I don't know that they are wider than the Altras. It's that the Altras don't have much cushion, which I'm looking for with the hard surfaces.
 

rohanmce

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
{Sept-Oct 2019/SJPDP-Finisterre}
I'll chuck my 2 cents in here. I also have wide feet and purchased a pair of Bondi 6 late last year as I'd heard lots of positive stories.

I was initially very impressed with them and the cushioning is very very good, however, after the initial settling in period, I became a little unhappy with the width. I'd been feeling just a small pinch and eventually developed a minor callous at the widest point of my right foot and another smaller callous on my left foot. The location of the callous is low down where the top part of the shoe is bonded to the sole. My foot is clearly too wide for the Bondi and the shoe is now starting to give way in this area. They are also wearing out at the inside heel area.

More recently Hoka announced the Bondi 6 wide and I purchased a set the very day they were announced.

Unfortunately, the Bondi 6 wides appear no wider and have identical performance and issues to the originals. As they are newer shoes the wear is not as well progressed but I can see the same pattern emerging. I won't be using these shoes for my Camino later this year.

I have reverted to Keen Targhee's for now and while they are heavier and will certainly require some breaking in, they have sufficient width for my feet. NB: I'm a US size 15 and I estimate a 4E for width and I am fully aware this puts me at the far end of the bell curve.
 

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OzAnnie

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
'Portuguese,Frances,Norte,Salvador/primitivo,Le puy, Inglés, CDM, Invierno, Fin/Mux, VDLP spring19
So, am i understanding right that the Hoka Ones are wider in the metatarsal area (and toe box, I assume) and more cushioned than the Lone Peaks? I walked many long days last year in the Lone Peaks and my feet were never achy. I thought it had amazing cushioning, so if you tell me the Hoka Ones are better, I will give them a try.
Hi laurie - another 2c from me!
Late last year I was heading to USA and had a list of suggestions to try on at REI whilst there.

Post #56 gave my feelings about the ones I tried.

I’m wearing trail runners on Vdlp (April this year) -not boots as previously.
However., on return home and trying the ones I returned with from my USA REI shop(Altras lone peaks ).. I found that the zero drop made my legs tire quickly.
They felt beautifully spacious though.

Since then the Hoka One one Bondi 6 plus other varieties are readily available here. I bought the bondi 6. The fitting is wide (D fitting) but although they feel comfortable, they are slightly snug ??

I’ve been alternating my local walks with my trusty Brooks ghost (same size and fitting D as the Bondi6)..
Strangley the ghosts seem roomier ?

So with a few days over 2 weeks before I leave home., I still haven’t made a decision about which footwear I’ll be wearing.

Laurie, like me, you’ll probably end up with a cupboard full of new ‘possible camino footwear’

Annie
 

C clearly

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2012, 2014, 2015, 2016). Seville-Astorga (Mar 2017). Mozarabe (Apr-May 2018)
I’ve been alternating my local walks with my trusty Brooks ghost (same size and fitting D
Interesting. I remember the thread about your shoe search and I mentioned my short-lived success with the Topo Terraventure (low drop) which was super-comfy but create another problem. A few weeks ago I bought the Brooks Ghost, also D-width, and quite like them. I'll be bringing them to Spain in a few weeks. (I have a nagging pain on the side/top of my foot that worries me, but I'm confident it is not a width or size issue.)
 

JillGat

la tierra encantada
Camino(s) past & future
C. Frances
SJPP - Finisterre - Muxia, May 2016
C. Frances, Sept 2017
Via de La Plata (spring, 2019)
I'll chuck my 2 cents in here. I also have wide feet and purchased a pair of Bondi 6 late last year as I'd heard lots of positive stories.

I was initially very impressed with them and the cushioning is very very good, however, after the initial settling in period, I became a little unhappy with the width. I'd been feeling just a small pinch and eventually developed a minor callous at the widest point of my right foot and another smaller callous on my left foot. The location of the callous is low down where the top part of the shoe is bonded to the sole. My foot is clearly too wide for the Bondi and the shoe is now starting to give way in this area. They are also wearing out at the inside heel area.

More recently Hoka announced the Bondi 6 wide and I purchased a set the very day they were announced.

Unfortunately, the Bondi 6 wides appear no wider and have identical performance and issues to the originals. As they are newer shoes the wear is not as well progressed but I can see the same pattern emerging. I won't be using these shoes for my Camino later this year.

I have reverted to Keen Targhee's for now and while they are heavier and will certainly require some breaking in, they have sufficient width for my feet. NB: I'm a US size 15 and I estimate a 4E for width and I am fully aware this puts me at the far end of the bell curve.
I also have found that the "wide" versions of shoes often don't feel any wider than the regular width version. WHY won't anybody make a truly wide shoe?? I remember back when I was a runner, Saucony had really wide forefoot shoes, but they finally narrowed them down to that ridiculous bullet shape that all shoes have (and no feet have). I bet it was because people didn't like how they looked; like duck feet, which is what I have.

One of Altra's big claims to fame is the wide, foot-shaped pattern. But mine, while they were better than any others I've tried, have started to wear a hole in the widest part of the shoe. I got a new pair and still wear them. But for the Portugues - with the hard surfaces - I am going to try the Hokas. Men's wide.

I also found this site for freaks like me with bunions, so maybe i will try some of these tips.

 

JabbaPapa

"True Pilgrim"
Camino(s) past & future
100 characters or fewer : see signature details
I've been barefoot on the Camino after my army boots broke in 1993, and lack of finance and lack of 21st century pilgrim supply shops forced me to finish that Camino in espadrilles, which was little better than barefoot -- and whilst I'd hardly recommend using ultra-light footwear to **that** particular extreme, truth is that once your feet have hardened enough it's actually quite feasible. But cripes was I relieved to put shoes on when I returned home !!!
 

JabbaPapa

"True Pilgrim"
Camino(s) past & future
100 characters or fewer : see signature details
that ridiculous bullet shape that all shoes have (and no feet have)
There are three basic shapes of feet -- one with the toes nearly level with each other ; one with a prominent second toe that the big toe and the others taper away from ; the third with the big toe being most prominent and the others smaller and forming a diagonal.

But there's also an uncountable number of completely unique individual variations.
 
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JillGat

la tierra encantada
Camino(s) past & future
C. Frances
SJPP - Finisterre - Muxia, May 2016
C. Frances, Sept 2017
Via de La Plata (spring, 2019)
There are three basic shapes of feet -- one with the toes nearly level with each other, one with a prominent second toe that the big toe and the others taper away from, the third with the big toe being most prominent and the others smaller and forming a diagonal.

But there's also an uncountable number of completely unique individual variations.
Right. And none of them are shaped like a bullet steeple.
 

JabbaPapa

"True Pilgrim"
Camino(s) past & future
100 characters or fewer : see signature details
Right. And none of them are shaped like a bullet steeple.
The basic shape with the prominent second toe is fairly well suited to that shoe form. NOT for anyone with the two other basic foot types, nor those having an intermediary anatomy (like me BTW).
 

JillGat

la tierra encantada
Camino(s) past & future
C. Frances
SJPP - Finisterre - Muxia, May 2016
C. Frances, Sept 2017
Via de La Plata (spring, 2019)
The basic shape with the prominent second toe is fairly well suited to that shoe form. NOT for anyone with the two other basic foot types, nor those having an intermediary anatomy (like me BTW).
Even with the prominent second toe (Morton's foot), I don't agree that feet are shaped like this.
 

JabbaPapa

"True Pilgrim"
Camino(s) past & future
100 characters or fewer : see signature details
Even with the prominent second toe (Morton's foot), I don't agree that feet are shaped like this.
They're not, but if you make sure that you get a shoe that's large enough, that shoe shape does accommodate those feet "fairly" well -- not perfectly, else I'd have said so. And women's shoes are generally far worse in this respect than men's.

Custom-made ones are what certain more egregious anatomies require, of course.

Anyway, the army boots I need to wear for related purposes are size 14, broad (now that the leather around my ankles and feet has stretched and adapted), and round-toed.

Good quality Italian shoes are otherwise generally far better than most, though yes, that requires both going to Italy and knowing what to look for (because bad Italian shoes are pretty rubbish).
 
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VNwalking

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (14/15)
St Olav/Francés ('16)
Baztanés/Francés ('17)
Ingles ('18)
Vasco/??/Invierno ('19)
Kick the front of the shoe into a post or stair or wall or someone's shin.
:eek:🤣...

I also have found that the "wide" versions of shoes often don't feel any wider than the regular width version. WHY won't anybody make a truly wide shoe??
Right. And none of them are shaped like a bullet steeple.
Oh, sole sister, you are singing my song.
I have asked that same question countless times.

My issue is only one foot - I once shattered a big toe and now (3 decades later) the metatarsophalangeal joint is big and arthritic. Did I say big? Not like a bunion big, where there's a deviation of the great toe towards other toes - the toe points very nicely forward, thank you very much - but it's huge both medially and dorsally: it's a big knob that sticks out and up. On top of that I grew up barefoot so I have really wide 'luau feet.' So I need a very wide and high forefoot. Those newer shoes, Hokas included, are bullet shaped, and I could no more wear even a Hoka One One comfortably than fly to the moon by flapping my arms. Like you, Dave, I wore Sauconys for a bunch of years as a marathon runner. But now? Hahahaha! No way.
I'm sorry to whine, but I hate fashion. :mad:
And many sandals press that joint right in just the wrong place. :mad::mad:
So now I happily wear Keens, because they are the only brand that fits anymore.

This year I need a new shoe because my old McKenzie I is gone forever and the Mckenzie II is not so durable - so trying the Arroyo. They are heavier than the McKenzies, and don't have some of the features of the McKenzie I loved so much - for a relatively short camino the Mckenzies are perfect. But for longer...? I'm not risking it.
Well I'll find out if the Arroyos are OK. I hope I am not disappointed.
(BTW, Neither are as cushy as the Hokas...but they fit if you have monster feet.)
 

Poppy-Pete

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances, leaving SJPDP from 10/11 May (2018)
We never stop learning do we? Every Camino I learn something new and this is true of Gear too!

So with 3 Caminos done, (Yes I'm a real Newbie compared to many members here), I'm thinking about gear for number 4. And reflecting on things that I have changed my mind about, or new bits of gear I love.

Just thought I would share the following.

Those Hair Shirts! (Merino) I have owned some since Camino #1 and only used them for evening wear. Too hot, too itchy...... This year I wore one walking........... I'm never going back to tech shirts! (they are like wearing a plastic bag in comparison)

As counter intuitive as it is, Merino shirts are good in hot weather as well as cold. They keep you dry and the sweat evaporates....

They don't last too well though. My walking shirt was patched with foot tape by the end. Will need to buy a couple more.

So I was wrong on the shirts!

Hikers Wool. Have loved this stuff since #1. Great for treating hot spots. Though if Pat is walking with me I need an extra pack! Her feet each morning looked like a Hobbit's .......... And thank you to the suppliers for mailing me a 2nd pack for pick up en route......
http://robscamino.com/2018/hikers-wool/

Umbrella. Worth it's weight in Gold! Mainly for hot days. Keeps me really cool and reduces my water consumption by about 40%
Quite handy in the rain too. (see the video under water bladders)

Water Bladders. Never again. I used them on #1 and #2. They are extra weight and sadly 'out of sight' so hard to monitor usage.
I'm now 'sold' on water bottles attached to the front pack straps with a drinking tube.
See video: http://robscamino.com/2018/packing-list/

Boots. The additional weight of boots may be causing or aggravating my foot problems. (Achilles, Shins). On advice from a Physio in Spain I'm going to try trail runners! Another Sacred Cow gone........ I love my boots!

What brands should I try? @davebugg?
Hi Robo. Before my Camino in 2018 I tried hiking boots, then hiking shoes, both of which were comfortable when first wearing during training but then not so after a bit of wearing. I tried Ascis Trail Runners, link below and they were great. Price wise they are at the lower end of the market but they were very comfortable and I was fortunate and didn't have any blisters at all with them. They have a reasonable sole that doesn't collect stones and dry out quickly after getting wet.
 

Finisterre

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Sarria 2001,
Porto 2006,
Valenca 2008,
Finisterre 2010,
SJdPP 2012,
Tui 2014.

No plans to return, yet.
I'm a fan of bondi's too but they are annoyingly tight.

This guy is pretty sorted when it comes to dealing with a narrow toe box.

 

JillGat

la tierra encantada
Camino(s) past & future
C. Frances
SJPP - Finisterre - Muxia, May 2016
C. Frances, Sept 2017
Via de La Plata (spring, 2019)
:eek:🤣...



Oh, sole sister, you are singing my song.
I have asked that same question countless times.

My issue is only one foot - I once shattered a big toe and now (3 decades later) the metatarsophalangeal joint is big and arthritic. Did I say big? Not like a bunion big, where there's a deviation of the great toe towards other toes - the toe points very nicely forward, thank you very much - but it's huge both medially and dorsally: it's a big knob that sticks out and up. On top of that I grew up barefoot so I have really wide 'luau feet.' So I need a very wide and high forefoot. Those newer shoes, Hokas included, are bullet shaped, and I could no more wear even a Hoka One One comfortably than fly to the moon by flapping my arms. Like you, Dave, I wore Sauconys for a bunch of years as a marathon runner. But now? Hahahaha! No way.
I'm sorry to whine, but I hate fashion. :mad:
And many sandals press that joint right in just the wrong place. :mad::mad:
So now I happily wear Keens, because they are the only brand that fits anymore.

This year I need a new shoe because my old McKenzie I is gone forever and the Mckenzie II is not so durable - so trying the Arroyo. They are heavier than the McKenzies, and don't have some of the features of the McKenzie I loved so much - for a relatively short camino the Mckenzies are perfect. But for longer...? I'm not risking it.
Well I'll find out if the Arroyos are OK. I hope I am not disappointed.
(BTW, Neither are as cushy as the Hokas...but they fit if you have monster feet.)
I started my first Camino in the Keen Arroyos (men's, because REI doesn't carry the women's model, even though they have shelf space for a dozen dress shoes. AT REI... I digress). Anyway, they felt great to begin with, plenty wide. But they started to stretch out and then to fall apart. They didn't work for me. I think the Chaco sandals work well for me because the straps don't cover the bunion area. If only they made a really cushy version for walking on pavement...
 

JillGat

la tierra encantada
Camino(s) past & future
C. Frances
SJPP - Finisterre - Muxia, May 2016
C. Frances, Sept 2017
Via de La Plata (spring, 2019)
I'm a fan of bondi's too but they are annoyingly tight.

This guy is pretty sorted when it comes to dealing with a narrow toe box.

I've thought about cutting a slot along the side where my forefoot is widest. Part of my problem, like VNWalking, is that I grew up walking barefoot. It's depressing to hear that the Bondi is tight. I just ordered a pair in Men's Wide. We'll see.

If any of you care to compare, the wide point of my right foot is 4" (over 10 cm) and I wear a size 9 women's/size 8 men's shoe (EU: 40-41)
 
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VNwalking

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (14/15)
St Olav/Francés ('16)
Baztanés/Francés ('17)
Ingles ('18)
Vasco/??/Invierno ('19)
My feet are about the same: 4.1" wide and EU 44-41
Quack quack.
QUOTE="JillGat, post: 719002, member: 47729"]
Anyway, they felt great to begin with, plenty wide. But they started to stretch out and then to fall apart.
[/QUOTE]
Uh-oh. Well. We'll see.
REI doesn't carry the women's model, even though they have shelf space for a dozen dress shoes. AT REI... I digress
Yeah, maybe off topic but I can't resist. Definitely :mad::mad::mad:
 

katie@camino

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF, SJPDP-Finisterre 2016; CPort (Central) from Porto 2017;
CPort (Coastal) from Porto 2018.
I started my first Camino in the Keen Arroyos (men's, because REI doesn't carry the women's model, even though they have shelf space for a dozen dress shoes. AT REI... I digress). Anyway, they felt great to begin with, plenty wide. But they started to stretch out and then to fall apart. They didn't work for me. I think the Chaco sandals work well for me because the straps don't cover the bunion area. If only they made a really cushy version for walking on pavement...
Couldn't agree more about the Chacos! Love them but a bit hard for long distances
 

JillGat

la tierra encantada
Camino(s) past & future
C. Frances
SJPP - Finisterre - Muxia, May 2016
C. Frances, Sept 2017
Via de La Plata (spring, 2019)
ALTRA LONE PEAK are very wide. I’m onto my second pair. TOPO have a wider toe box as well.
The Altra Lone Peak is supposed to have the widest toe box out there. So I bought the Men's, which is even wider than the Women's. Below are pictures of 1. My duck footed shoes, 2. Where they started to wear out (at the widest part of my foot) and 3. How I fixed em. These are my older pair. I haven't mutilated my new ones yet.
 

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C clearly

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2012, 2014, 2015, 2016). Seville-Astorga (Mar 2017). Mozarabe (Apr-May 2018)
The Altra Lone Peak is supposed to have the widest toe box out there.
Maybe, but they were too low-volume for my high arch. The Topo Terraventure was better, with a wide toe box and more height, but the low-rise doesn't please my left foot.
 

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